Durango, CO Real Estate News

By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
    This past week The Wells Group Real Estate Brokerage presented its 14th annual Real Estate Forecast discussing in depth the Durango Real Estate Market. With approximately 300 people in attendance at the Fort Lewis College Community Concert Hall, our firm, along with Bob Allen (real estate consultant and senior appraiser with Allen and Associates) gave a presentation that included video, live discussion as well as a PowerPoint presentation. This is a very in depth analysis of real estate in La Plata County where we thoroughly review what happened in 2013 and where we think we are headed in 2014. Since we have done this for a number of years, we can show the trends and the directions that the various markets are going. One of the major points of discussion was the lack of inventory in...
Comments 0
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
     Durango area residential real estate sales for the first 2 months of 2014 show that the greatest activity is from $500,000 and under.  87% of all sales fell into that under $500,000 price range, while 81% in that price range were under contract-of-sale at the end of February.                 In looking at the active La Plata County residential inventory of 552 units, 183 of those (or 33%) are priced at $500,000 and above.  You can see in that price range that we have an overabundance of inventory, while in the under $500,000 price categories those properties represent just 67% of the available homes, which is an under supply.  That disparity between the 87% of the sales compared to 67% of the available inventory puts additional upward pricing pressure in that lower price range. As ...
Comments 0
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
Final Durango Real Estate Stats & A Look at 2014 As I mentioned in my very 1st blog of the year regarding the Durango real estate sales statistics comparing 2013 to 2012, we have now finished that complete analysis and have posted it online on my website.  Here is a link directly to that:  Durango Real Estate Comparative Statistics   One of the alarming trends, is the continuing decline in inventory available for an increasing number of buyers.  Let me share some statistics with you regarding that.  For many years I have been logging “units available” in my real estate analysis.  As you can see from the attached chart, in 2010 there were 1333 residential units available in the 1st week of January compared to only 563 during the same time period in 2014. Here is a link to that chart: ava...
Comments 0
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
The following statistics are for only La Plata County and include the towns of Durango, Bayfield, and Ignacio. These are residential real estate statistics only and do not include vacant land or commercial. It usually takes about a week or so after the end of the year for everybody to get their “solds” reported to the MLS. I thought I would do just a real quick check and see how 2013 compared to 2012. The preliminary numbers are pretty interesting, to say the least. Total residential real estate sales in La Plata County increased by 32% in dollar volume from $285 million in $2012 to $377 million in 2013. Number of units sold increased by 33% going from 778 homes/condos all the way to 1036 this past year. The average sales price increased by 7% to $364,709. While the median sales price i...
Comments 2
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
        Just a quick walk down Main Street says that the Holidays are certainly on their way!The merchants are in full celebration mode!  Some have already put up festive colorful decor.  Some are marking sale items brightly and boldly.The creativity abounds!  The bead shop has colorful glass baubles hanging on various lengths of bright ribbons.  Many shops have added twinkly lights and fake snow.  Soon each and every shop will have some semblance of cheer.Our favorite of the day featured this holiday weasel.  He absolutely screamed greetings as we walked briskly toward lunch opportunities.  You can visit him too!  He is at "Sorrell Sky Gallery"Durango is always fun and festive, so the approach of holidays is just one more reason to celebrate being here!
Comments 3
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
Continuing education in real estate is so important. Let me qualify that with "good, informative continuing education" is so important. Having been in this business for 35 years, I have seen some really really bad classes that made me want to sit in the back row and just snooze. Two weeks ago, our company held our annual real estate educational retreat. We're not a big organization-about 50 brokers-every year we hold an all day event with outside speakers. In the past we have had Ed Hatch a couple of times, Buddy West, James Nellis and Dr. Yun who is the NAR chief economist. One year our entire company went to the National Association of Realtors convention. You can see that we are dedicated to good education. This year's retreat featured 8 CyberStars from around the country. There are ...
Comments 0
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
Durango Real Estate Sales Statistics-YTD 2013 Residential real estate sales dollar volume in La Plata County increased by 33% during the 1st 9 months of this year compared to the 1st 9 months of last year. The average sales price, however only increased by 1.77% to $342,802. The median sales price for the same timeframe rose 2.7% to $308,250. The 1st 9 months of this year saw 799 homes sell in La Plata County (that would be the cities/towns of Durango, Bayfield, Ignacio and Hesperus) compared to just 608 last year for the same timeframe. I track the sales to list price percentage for every transaction and last year La Plata County homes sold for 94.6% of their last asked price while this year the market firmed up and homes sold for 96.08% of their last asked listed price. That is an imp...
Comments 2
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
    For the past sixteen years, off and on,  we have used our wardrobe to  stand out in the crowded field.  With 300 plus agents in a small town, it is easy to just blend into the woodwork,  that technique will not generate any potential business or contacts.As the "Durango Home Team". We have steadily acquired a collection of matching shirts .  Some of them are an exact match, and others are simply similar.  It is obvious that we got dressed in the same house.During the Labor Day motorcycle rally we wore our most colorful Patriotic shirts.   As we walked down Main Street to and from lunch, we received many compliments, and a couple of people actually stopped us to converse.  We think that is a positive sign.  We knew that we are  friendly and approachable.   Now we need to incorporate...
Comments 5
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
Just a couple of basics made themselves obvious when we were showing a couple of days ago.When we arrived at one of the scheduled properties, we knocked on the door, rang the bell and waited.  When there was no answer we exercised our lock box key and entered.  We toured the kitchen, half bath and living area.  Suddenly we heard our client talking to someone.She said, " there is someone here!"  The someone asked me if our appointment had not been earlier.  I told her that we had asked for 1-5 since the properties were spread out a good distance.  She said that was not what she had been told.  She then said that we had not knocked on the door.  I  explained that we had knocked, rung the bell and called out when we opened the door.  Our client asked me if she would rather we not be there....
Comments 2
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
We live in a whole different world filled with "social" media.  We use email, text messages, Facebook, twitter and other media to communicate.We seldom make social phone calls or have face to face meetings.  Ralph and I are as guilty as anyone.  We frequently sit across from each other at a dining table with him working on his Ipad and me working on my Mini.Whatever happened to conversation?  It went away so gradually I did not notice..  Talk about absorbed in our own little worlds!Talk would be interesting!  We share everything 24/7, but we are ceasing to communicate.  How can it be?It appears that the computers, iPads and other personal communication devices are so dominating our every waking minute that we are slipping into a less responsive society.Social?  Not the skills I was tau...
Comments 38
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
  All of us from time to time need a motivating seminar.Wells Fargo was kind enough to provide just what we needed last Wednesday.Not only did they provide an interesting and educational seminar, but they served us a tasty lunch!The seminar was at an area landmark.  It was at the Gaslight theatre in downtown Durango which is an antique movie theatre.  Charming and old are combined with comfort.  Great surroundings for an infusion of information.Lou Holtz, legendary football coach and author was first up.  He shared some of the inspiring secrets of his success.His first point was the importance of Attitude.   He stressed that things are "up to you."  Because everyone has trials and tribulations..... How YOU respond is up to you and the attitude you hold.He said that as Realtors, we add ...
Comments 2
By RJ Baxter, 303-670-0137
(Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation)
Special Government Home Renovation Loan Program with FHA 203K Renovation Loans in Durango Colorado. This article will explain the little-known special government loan program that is part of FHA (Federal Housing Administration- a department within HUD). Thanks to this special FHA loan program, a buyer or home owner can do meaningful amounts of remodeling or updates to their new or existing home without the higher cost of a second mortgage. "Luxury items" like a hot tub and a swimming pool are not allowed by this FHA loan program. Items such as remodeling cabinetry in kitchens and bathrooms, painting, adding wallpaper, replacing appliances and flooring, or even adding a room to an existing structure (which will increase the value of the homes square footage) are allowed. There are many ...
Comments 0
By RJ Baxter, 303-670-0137
(Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation)
Colorado USDA rural housing home loans, 100% financing for Durango Home Mortgage Loans. USDA mortgage Loans in Durango are an excellent choice to help with your home buying needs. If you are looking to buy a home in Durango , take advantage of this 0% down payment option. Read more below: -Interest Rates on this program are still competitive compared to both FHA and Conventional Loans. The best features of the USDA home loan include 100% financing with no down payment and interest rates that are fixed for 30 years. There is 100% financing available with a very small monthly mortgage insurance payment compared to other types of loans (consists of about .30% of loan amount per year). Compare this to other loan programs that aren't as low, and you will see the savings. There are many diff...
Comments 0
By RJ Baxter, 303-670-0137
(Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation)
  VA Mortgage Loans in Durango  CO and 100% Durango  CO VA Loans - the best loan program in Colorado! Designed for both active duty military and honorable discharged Veterans, VA Mortgage Loans are one of the best mortgage loan programs available today. Here are some of the main features of this great program: - Up to 100% financing, with no down required. - Monthly mortgage insurance is not tacked on to your payment. - More lenient credit qualifying standards than other types of mortgage loans. - Low rates compared to other loan programs. How do you know if you qualify for a VA Mortgage Loan in Durango  CO? First of all, you must verify your eligibility. Eligibility is verified by ordering your Certificate of Eligibility or COE. You can work with an approved Colorado VA mortgage loan l...
Comments 0
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
At one point or another we all have to audition for a job.  It simply means putting our best efforts and face forward.When it comes to Real Estate, it means showing our best daily in every situation.  We are only as good as our last transaction.  Happy clients tell all their friends and family how well things went. Conversely, if things did not go well, they will tell everyone they know about the disaster.One of the most important features of our job is communication.  Sellers and buyers feel as if their lives are in complete limbo.  No one enjoys the process of moving.  It is unsettling at best!Even a call to let them know that there is no news is better than leaving them to their own conclusions.We had a client a while back who bought a home through us contingent upon the sale of his ...
Comments 1
By Rick Lorenz, REALTOR Emeritus, CRS, ABR, CyberStar, CNE, E-Pro
(Team Lorenz)
Would you like to be a hero in the eyes of your client?  Show them a way to save money?  Then here is a good idea. Wi-Fi Thermostat-Perfect for 2nd Home Owners Durango is a real estate market where we get a number of 2nd home purchasers because we are a short drive from cities like Albuquerque and Phoenix where it is considerably hotter during the summer months.  We also offer first-class skiing at the Durango Mountain Resort during the winter months.  Consequently, many 2nd home or vacation property owners, when they leave, adjust their thermostats to cut down on their utility bills while the home is not occupied.  However, when they come back to their 2nd home, the temperature will usually be too cold in the winter and too warm in the summer upon their arrival.  Rob Levy, a good frien...
Comments 1
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
One of the most destructive things we can do to ourselves is stress about things.   Our business is fraught with stress inducing situations.  There are so many things we cannot control in addition to people who love being difficult.   After dealing with stress in the traditional ways I suffered a stoke in 2007,  the results were not pretty and two years of my life were basically wasted.   It was one of those cases of "get better or bitter."  Getting better was a lot of work and it was NO fun.  I am not bitter about it, I just do not recommend the program.   Today I relish the blessing of being relatively healthy again. I am out of the wheelchair, off the cane and I do know how lucky I was.   I am off all the pharmacy drugs and am able to work .  Life is good unless I chose to mess it up...
Comments 4
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
Working is important.  We are all supposed to participate in a profession or two.  When we work hard we not only feel more fulfilled, but we are able to live more comfortably.Work like everything else can be taken to extremesOne of our sons brought our grandson for a visit this week.  We had a great time visiting with them. There was one cloud over the visit.  Our son was continuously either on the phone, or answering his emails.At one  point our grandson looked at me and said "Gram, dad has had the phone in his ear ever since we left Houston yesterday."  The child was clearly NOT amused.From his Dads point of view,  the effort to continue the work through the vacation was his way of insuring the dollars to get everything the child could ever want or need.The way the child saw things, H...
Comments 23
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
Unfortunately, all of us encounter things that make us feel good.  Things that we just cannot get enough of are always out there to tempt us..  They frequently become addictions.We have become more and more addicted to having a light yogurt treat several times a week.  We use that instead of the usual dinner fare.The nice folks at "Top That" can almost set their watches by our evening appearances.Not only is yogurt healthier than some things but the toppings offer such a large selection that you can actually make a satisfying meal of your snack.We have been indulging in our "addiction" for several weeks now.  The bonus to getting our sweet fix, is that we are loosing belly fat.Will this work for you?  The only way to know is to try it! We have also increased the distances we walk too.  ...
Comments 6
By Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker, Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
(Janisch & Co.)
Since my initial career launch in 1978, I have attended at least four New Member orientations.Yesterday was another.  It started at 8:30 and concluded at 1:30.  We were given a large package of information when we arrived.  We were shown a couple of films and listened to a whole lot of rules and regulations.The short story is that this required program could have been condensed into two hours.  Since most of the essential info was in the packet, we could have been turned loose to read it.Most Realtors stay busy with finding customers, listings and marketing both.  We respectfully submit that spending hours listening to rules is NOT the highest or best use of our time.If the time had been spent teaching us nuances of the MLS system or some new marketing tools available in the area, it wo...
Comments 2